Being a churchplanter is a strange thing in itself. Standing in line at a coffeehouse in Seattle, imagine striking up a conversation with your barista, who asks, “what do you do for work?” I answer, “I’m a minister,” enough to get a double take in itself even before adding the kicker, “and I’m starting a new church with a group of people in the U-District.” So now, I’m a woman, a minister, and a cult leader all in one. Even talking with folks who have gone to church their whole lives, thinking about churchplanting can be a new concept. How do you start a church? What do you do? What will it look like?
Over the past few weeks, there have been more interesting questions and comments. If you might not have a denomination to plant with, what do you do? What do you believe? And the big one that always comes up: Who holds you accountable and makes sure you don’t become a crazy cult leader?
Bearing in mind that I never anticipated being in the place we are today, It’s a great question. I have heard the same one from every person I know who is starting a house church or has been kicked out of their denomination for the same reasons we’re struggling with ours. So just who is it that keeps me accountable, and us as a community accountable?
For now, we’re working on it, and have come up with some measures to keep me from busting out the white nikes and kool-aid.
It’s not perfect, but it’s a start. We’re doing our best to make sure we are never acting alone, and that we’re modeling as a church what it means to be present in one another’s lives. I have no interest in planting a church alone. If we become anything, if we do any ministry, if we come to any greater understanding of what the Gospel means in our lives and in our city, it will be because there is a group of amazing folks all working together who allow me to be part of that process. Thanks Sinners & Saints folks, I am so grateful to be in community with you.
For all my churchplanting friends out there, what are your practices of accountability?